Three decades and $750 million later, Randy Owen keeps the promise he made to St. Jude’s Danny Thomas

ABC RadioNearly three decades ago, Alabama’s Randy Owen took up the cause of St. Jude founder Danny Thomas, leading the charge for country music to raise money to help end childhood cancer.

As of this weekend’s 29th annual Country Cares for St. Jude Seminar in Memphis, country’s efforts have brought in more than three-quarters of a billion dollars.

Drake White — who hails from the same part of Alabama as Randy Owen — talked to the Country-Music-Hall-of-Famer about his motivation.

“I asked him, ‘What planted that seed? Was there a sickness in your family? Was there a young person that had cancer or whatever?’” Drake explained. “And he said, his faith. And he starts talking about growing up, and his roots of growing up in a small town, which is my home as well.”

“So, it’s very inspirational,” Drake continues, “that somebody that had a seed planted inside of them followed through at this magnitude. $750 million have been raised, just because the odds were stacked against them and they just kept on keepin’ on.”

Jerrod Niemann is another artist who’s proud to continue the work that Randy started.

“What I learned…  is in country music we’re all so lucky to hold a torch… but it encompasses so much more than just music. And to see the footprints that all of our heroes have left behind, you know it’s our duty to keep that going.”

Last month, the hottest stars in country music helped launch the new “This Shirt Saves Lives” campaign. You can find out more at

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